9 Ways to Attract Boys to Your Studio

Photo by Maxwell Bolton, courtesy of Next Generation Ballet

Paint the walls of your studio in a gender-neutral color, like tan, gray, green or even red.

Have some male-centric wall decor to balance out your ballerina posters. Frame dance photos featuring strong male dancers for inspiration.

Change the color of your class uniforms from pink to maroon, black, green or blue.

Consider redesigning your studio logo in a contemporary, gender-neutral font. Try forgoing the standard pointe shoe logo for something that will appeal to both genders, like tap shoes or a well-turned-out fifth position. (Many boys will have a hard time wearing a jacket with a pair of pink ballet slippers on it.)

Seek out highly recommended male teachers who have a reputation for discipline and passion. Your female students will experience a new perspective, and your males will feel more comfortable with a positive male role model.

Encourage parents who wait in the lobby with their young sons to enroll them in a free class. They'll have a hobby they can share with their sisters.

Create a boys-only class to build teamwork and confidence among your male dancers. Give it time to build—don't automatically cancel it if it doesn't catch on right away.

Get your dads involved, whether with a dads' dance or by helping out backstage with props and scenery. They'll be more inclined to allow their sons to take class if they experience firsthand the positive effects.

Don't pit boys against girls by separating them into two groups during class. Mix up the genders in class choreography, too. And remember to let boys (as well as girls) demonstrate positions or steps.

Thanks to Paul E. Finocchiaro, University of Tampa professor.

Teachers Trending
Photo by Yvonne M. Portra, courtesy Faulkner

It's a Wednesday in May, and 14 Stanford University advanced modern ­dance students are logged on to Zoom, each practicing a socially distanced duet with an imaginary person. "Think about the quality of their personality and the type of duet you might have," says their instructor Katie Faulkner, "but also their surface area and how you'd relate to them in space." Amid dorm rooms, living rooms, dining rooms and backyards, the dancers make do with cramped quarters and dodge furniture as they twist, curve, stretch and intertwine with their imaginary partners.

Keep reading... Show less
Getty Images

Securing the correct music licensing for your studio is an important step in creating a financially sound business. "Music licensing is something studio owners seem to either embrace or ignore completely," says Clint Salter, CEO and founder of the Dance Studio Owners Association. While it may seem like it's a situation in which it's easier to ask for forgiveness rather than permission—that is, to wait until you're approached by a music-rights organization before purchasing a license—Salter disagrees, citing Peloton, the exercise company that produces streaming at-home workouts. In February, Peloton settled a music-licensing suit with the National Music Publishers' Association out-of-court for an undisclosed amount. Originally, NMPA had sought $300 million in damages from Peloton. "It can get extremely expensive," says Salter. "It's not worth it for a studio to get caught up in that."

As you continue to explore a hybrid online/in-person version of your class schedule, it's crucial that your music licenses include coverage for livestreamed instruction—which comes with its own particular requirements. Here are some answers to frequently asked questions about music licensing—in both normal times and COVID times—as well as some safe music bets that won't pose any issues.

Keep reading... Show less
Teaching Tips
A 2019 Dancewave training. Photo by Effy Grey, courtesy Dancewave

By now, most dance educators hopefully understand that they have a responsibility to address racism in the studio. But knowing that you need to be actively cultivating racial equity isn't the same thing as knowing how to do so.

Of course, there's no easy answer, and no perfect approach. As social justice advocate David King emphasized at a recent interactive webinar, "Cultivating Racial Equity in the Classroom," this work is never-ending. The event, hosted by Dancewave (which just launched a new racial-equity curriculum) was a good starting point, though, and offered some helpful takeaways for dance educators committed to racial justice.

Keep reading... Show less

Get Dance Business Weekly in your inbox

Sign Up Used in accordance with our Privacy Policy.